The Emiratisation file in the UAE received what can be described as a “booster dose” after the Cabinet approved a
decision to raise the percentage of localization of skilled jobs by 2% annually in private sector companies
whose facilities include 50 or more employees, with the aim of creating job opportunities that exceed 12,000
jobs annually for citizens in the UAE. The private sector and the various economic sectors in the country.
The UAE seeks to enhance the attractiveness of the private sector to be able to attract citizens who are willing
to work, through integrated packages of decisions. In the following report, the Emirates News Agency reviews a package of programs
and decisions that, in their entirety, constitute an integrated system aimed at consolidating the Emiratisation
Over the past years, the UAE has created an integrated and unprecedented system for Emiratisation in terms of
obligating, employing and training citizens in light of amending some legislation, providing government
financial support and approving privileges to motivate institutions to attract citizens.
On September 12, 2021, the UAE government launched the second package of the fifty projects, which includes 13
projects that fall under a major program entitled “Nafis”, an integrated federal national program that aims to
raise the competitiveness of national cadres, and enable them to occupy distinguished jobs in private sector
institutions in state over the next five years.
The UAE government has allocated 24 billion dirhams to support the private sector to accommodate 75,000 citizens
during the next phase. The Nafes programs and projects support the salaries of citizens in the private sector,
and their contributions to the retirement system, allocate special financial bonuses to some specialized
professions, and grant special bonuses to the children of citizens, as well as offering programs And plans to
train and qualify national cadres. The program also provides financial support for the projects of university
students and graduates.
“Nafis” includes a program to support citizens’ salaries in the private sector, and a Mazaya program, which aims
to support citizens working in distinct specialties in the private sector, such as programmers, nurses,
accountants, auditors, and others, and give them a fixed bonus above the salary, amounting to 5,000 dirhams per
month for a period of five years. And the “Istikhara” program, under which the government bears the pension fund
contributions for the citizen employee in the private sector for a period of 5 years, for those whose salaries
are less than 20 thousand dirhams per month. The government will also bear the bulk of the employer’s
contributions to the retirement fund for national employees during the first five years of their joining the
Emiratisation was one of the main performance indicators in the UAE Vision 2021, by focusing on training citizens
in many fields to develop their life and career skills and unleash their potential to lead the wheel of economic
development witnessed by the country.
In September 2019, the Council of Ministers held a special session during which it took 10 strategic decisions to
support the Emiratisation file, which included providing 20,000 jobs for citizens in the banking, aviation,
telecommunications, insurance and real estate sectors within 3 years, and approved a fund of 300 million dirhams
to train 18,000 citizens, and allocate part of the tax returns. To support the Emiratisation file and train
8,000 citizens annually in the private sector with government-supported rewards.
The Council approved legal amendments to equalize citizens in the private sector with the government, especially
in calculating the retirement salary and in the inclusion of service, limiting employment in administrative and
supervisory jobs in the government sector to citizens and specifying 160 jobs in the private sector in which
citizens are given priority.
In turn, the annual meetings of the UAE government constituted an important platform for launching innovative
programs and initiatives in order to make further progress in the field of Emiratisation.
During the meetings held in 2019, the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation signed memoranda of
understanding with the executive councils in Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Sharjah, Ajman, Ras Al Khaimah and Fujairah, with
the aim of defining the complementary joint roles and responsibilities between the federal government and local
governments, in the context of achieving the objectives of the new package of decisions supporting the
The memorandums stipulated that the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation cooperate with the executive
councils in following up on the implementation of Emiratisation decisions at the local level in terms of
obligating all government establishments and the private sector to give priority to appointing citizens in 160
professions and following up on local government and semi-government agencies regarding the localization of
support service jobs by raising Emiratisation rates. By 10 percent annually, it will reach at least 50 percent
within five years, according to the Emiratisation targets.
The annual meetings of the UAE government, which were held in 2017, witnessed the launch of 3 different
initiatives in terms of objectives: the “National Manpower Observatory” initiative, the “Emirates Gateway to
Emiratisation” initiative, in addition to the “Qualitative Emiratisation Program” initiative.
Banking and insurance sector
Over the past years, the UAE has witnessed the issuance of binding decisions for institutions operating in
specific sectors, such as the banking and insurance sectors, to employ national cadres, at annual rates of up to
4%, and to motivate private companies and institutions to participate in the Emiratisation process, through the
state bearing part of the monthly rewards that Citizens working in these institutions receive it, in addition to
bearing the costs of training provided to the citizen employee.
In accordance with the strategic vision of the UAE government aimed at raising the rates of Emiratization of
jobs, the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation decided to increase the number of jobs limited to UAE
nationals in the private sector. An example of this is Ministerial Resolution No. 710 of 2016 regarding the
localization of the data entry profession for companies that use more than 1000 employees.
The Ministry has obligated the owners of private companies working in the construction and construction field
that employ 500 staff or more to appoint at least one Emirati employee to the position of an occupational health and safety
officer, starting from 2017.